If you are interested in generative audiovisual art that is stored completely on-chain, you might want to check out the work of DEAFBEEF, a pseudonymous artist who uses nothing but a C compiler to create stunning pieces of art that can be encoded as sound and visual media.
DEAFBEEF started his project in 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, as a way to explore the fundamental level of digital media creation. He writes C programs that generate raw numerical data that can be interpreted as sound and images. He then stores the source code of these programs on the Ethereum blockchain, using a technique that he calls “a new method for maximum permanence for NFT art”.
DEAFBEEF has released several series of audiovisual NFTs, each with a different theme and style. Some of his series include:
- Synth Poems – inspired by modular synthesizers and electronic music
- Angular – features geometric shapes and patterns
- Transmission – simulates radio transmissions and interference
- Entropy – explores the concept of disorder and randomness
- Glitchbox – emulates glitches and errors in digital systems
- Advection – simulates fluid dynamics and smoke
- Caves – inspired by natural caves and caverns
- Noumenon – represents an “unknowable reality beyond our immediate senses”
DEAFBEEF’s NFTs have been highly sought after by collectors and fans of generative art. According to DappRadar, his NFTs have traded over $1.3 million in total volume . He has also collaborated with museums, charities, and other artists to create unique and innovative projects. For example, he created a collection of satirical generative texts called FIRST, which he donated all the proceeds to GiveDirectly.org charity . He also created a physical vinyl release of his audio works, which he sold as NFTs with signed editions .
DEAFBEEF’s NFT art is not only impressive in its aesthetic quality, but also in its technical innovation. He pushes the limits of what can be done with C language and on-chain storage, creating artworks that are self-contained, decentralized, and permanent. He also challenges the conventional notions of what art is and how it can be experienced, inviting us to immerse ourselves in his generative world.
Last modified: May 18, 2023